MY GRANDFATHER KANAK VINCENT RAJAN AND I CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS TOGETHER IN 2009.
By Siya Rajan
One summer, when I was maybe 10 years old, my grandfather – I called him thata – put a typewriter down in front of me and said, “go on, write about how your vacation has been so far.”
My first thought was, “What is this thing?”
I had never seen a typewriter before and wondered why I couldn’t just use a computer, but I went ahead and took it as a challenge. Before I knew it, I actually enjoyed typing on that thing.
Fast forward a couple years, my thata would always give me writing books, whether it be about people becoming successful journalists or writers, or simply books about how to improve my speech and writing.
I liked writing much better than practicing math, but I had never thought about going after it in college or later in life. I always wondered why he was so keen on me pursuing this.
I have been thinking about this lately and I think he saw what my strengths were and noticed that I liked writing and because I had a knack for it, he did not want me to give up on it. Ever since he passed away, I always think about him when I write an article, whether it was for The Panther, a class and even as I write for Prowl magazine.
I think I got lucky because instead of shutting him out I let him in and liked when he checked up on me about whether I was still writing or not. Sometimes I think certain people in your family know you better than yourself and you just need to let them in and I am glad I did. Those books made me want to continue writing and made me better at it over the years, which I am so thankful for.
It makes me wonder if I would have such a passion for writing if he hadn't dropped the 20 pound typewriter in front of me.
My thata, who passed away this year, was a passionate man and he always told me, “I think we have the writing gene and I think you should exploit it.”
Thank you thata for making me pursue my passion before I even knew it.